Interview with Charles "Buck" Maggard, November 29, 1990

Project: Appalachia: War On Poverty Oral History Project

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Interview Summary

Charles "Buck" Maggard was born in a lumber camp, but moved to a coal camp near Vicco, Perry County, Kentucky at a very young age. Maggard speaks at length about the coal industry in the post-World War Two era. He explains that in the late 1950s most of the coal mined in eastern Kentucky came from "dog hole" mines, which were run by independent owners without union contracts. Eventually these small operators refused to pay the union's royalty on the coal, which was the money that financed the United Mine Workers Association hospitals. Maggard recalls that the union leadership then revoked the health cards from many eastern Kentucky miners resulting in the Roving Picket Movement. Maggard describes the Roving Picket Movement as involving many people from the region including current and retired miners, women, and even people who had no connection with the industry. He remembers that the movement resulted in violence on both sides and that Perry County became an "armed camp."

Maggard states that out of the confusion, the Appalachian Committee for Full Employment (ACFFE) was organized to work for improvements in eastern Kentucky. Hhe explains that when the Great Society program was initiated by President Lyndon B. Johnson, the funds needed to make concrete advances bypassed the ACFFE and went straight to what he calls "courthouse gangs." However, Maggard explains that many former members of the Roving Pickets movement organized their communities and were able to significantly influence the Perry County Community Action Agency. When the Community Action Programs (CAP) were reorganized on a multi-county level, the progress made in the communities was thwarted. Maggard explains that the reorganization was a calculated effort to minimize the effects that the poor could have on the board.

Maggard describes other groups that grew out of the Roving Picket/War on Poverty era including the Appalachian Group to Save the Land and People (AGSLP) and the Black Lung Association. AGSLP worked to end strip mining, but the bill that they backed, the Reclamation Bill of 1966, actually ended up legalizing strip mining. Maggard explains that he feels that many people came out of the 1960s willing to stand up and speak for themselves.

Interview Accession

1991oh025_app297

Interviewee Name

Charles "Buck" Maggard

Interviewer Name

Thomas Kiffmeyer

Interview Date

1990-11-29

Interview Rights

All rights to the interviews, including but not restricted to legal title, copyrights and literary property rights, have been transferred to the University of Kentucky Libraries.

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Interviews may be reproduced with permission from Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, Special Collections, University of Kentucky Libraries.

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Interviews may be reproduced with permission from Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, Special Collections, University of Kentucky Libraries.

All rights to the interviews, including but not restricted to legal title, copyrights and literary property rights, have been transferred to the University of Kentucky Libraries.

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Maggard, Charles Interview by Thomas Kiffmeyer. 29 Nov. 1990. Lexington, KY: Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries.

Maggard, C. (1990, November 29). Interview by T. Kiffmeyer. Appalachia: War On Poverty Oral History Project. Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries, Lexington.

Maggard, Charles, interview by Thomas Kiffmeyer. November 29, 1990, Appalachia: War On Poverty Oral History Project, Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries.





Persistent Link for this Record: https://kentuckyoralhistory.org/ark:/16417/xt7ngf0mv755